Tag Archives: cocaine

Jamaican Drug Lord Takes on Government

24 May

Seems Mexico isn’t the only North American country where drug gangs aren’t afraid to go toe-to-toe with security forces. When the Jamaican government tried to extradite alleged drug lord Christopher “Dudus” Coke (yep, apparently his real name), his gang soldiers attacked three police stations and have so far killed two cops and injured more. Authorities have declared a state of emergency in parts of Kingston. U.S. prosecutors say Coke sells loads of cocaine and marijuana¬† in the States, where he uses the proceeds to buy guns to send home to Jamaica. Good thing pot is illegal but guns aren’t, eh?

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Obama: Smarter on Drugs

13 May

The Obama administration just came out with their first formal strategy on illegal drugs, and for the first time in at least 40 years, the federal government is taking steps in the right direction. It’s a long way from a wholesale revamp of the disastrous War on Drugs that has helped send America’s prison population skyrocketing while doing nothing to reduce the drug trade, but it does put more emphasis on treating drugs as a health issue rather than a criminal justice one. That’s an approach that has paid off in places like Vancouver, Canada.

And it’s just the latest refreshingly common-sensical reforms Obama has supported. As the Boston Globe sums up:

“Obama [repealed] a two-decade old ban on the use of federal money for needle-exchange programs to reduce the spread of HIV. His administration also said it won’t target medical marijuana patients or caregivers as long as they comply with state laws and aren’t fronts for drug traffickers. Earlier this year, Obama called on Congress to eliminate the disparity in sentencing that punishes crack crimes more heavily than those involving powder cocaine.”

The folks at the Drug Policy Alliance break it all down – and point out some ways Obama could go further.